After two episodes of suspenseful build-up, the Battle of Winterfell finally made it to our TV screens. Game of Thrones season 8 episode 3 was one heck of a ride.
Not only was it the longest battle in cinema history, it was brutal for fans. We know by now that no one is safe when it comes to George R. R. Martin and showrunners David Benioff and D.B Weiss.
Please note, this article contains spoilers for Game of Thrones season 8 episode 3, titled The Long Night. Also known as The Battle of Winterfell. If you don’t want spoilers, turn back now. Don’t say we didn’t warn you.
We’ve rounded up a collection of easter eggs you may have missed during The Long Night. It’s okay, the episode was dark, literally and figuratively, you are forgiven for missing a few key points.
Now, get a cup of tea or something stronger, and let’s delve into this episode’s death toll.
Game of Thrones characters who died
Most of the Dothraki
Yes, Melisandre gave them flaming magic swords but clearly, it wasn’t enough. The Dothraki bravely charged into the army of the dead as Winterfell’s first line of defence.
Personally, I feel the Dothraki would have been victorious had they been kept back until the enemy arrived at the gates, instead of just mindlessly sending them off into the darkness. But I digress.
‘Dolorous’ Edd Tollett
Edd died saving Sam. Another wasted death if you ask me. I’m not saying he shouldn’t have saved Sam. But perhaps once the saving was over, he could have turned around and focussed on the chaos surrounding them.
Instead, he stares at Sam for some unknown reason, too long for comfort, and was stabbed in the back by a wight. If you need a refresher, Edd was Acting Lord Commander of the Night’s Watch after Jon returned to Winterfell.
“Whoever dies last, be a good lad and burn the rest of us. Once I’m done with this world, I don’t want to come back.”
Edd Tollett to Gilly
This was hard to watch. Lyanna Mormont, aged 10, was fierce, determined and always ready for the fight. She refused to back down and sit out the battle.
Lyanna was fatally struck by a giant and was impaled by a spike, but true to character, she didn’t cower. She gathered her strength and ran directly to her fate. The dragon crushed her, but she still killed him.
“I don’t plan on knitting by the fire while men fight for me.”
Lyanna Mormont to Lord Glover
We don’t want to be mean, but it was about time. Beric died six times already and was resurrected each time by the late Thoros of Myr, a Red Priest. He always wondered why the Red Lord kept bringing him back.
Well, Beric found out during the Battle of Winterfell what his real purpose in life was – to save Arya from the crypts of Winterfell so she could go on and kill the Night King.
“The enemy always wins. And we still need to fight him. That’s all I know. You and I won’t find much joy while we’re here, but we can keep others alive. We can defend those who can’t defend themselves.”
Berid Dondarrion discussing his mission.
Complex character, this. Some cried when he died; others said he deserved it. What’s important is that Theon died saving Bran, and Bran had forgiven his past acts.
He made amends for his crimes against the Starks by protecting Bran when it mattered the most. The last words he heard were from Bran, “You’re a good man, thank you.”
“I always wanted to do the right thing. Be the right kind of person. But I never knew what that meant. It always seemed that there was an impossible choice I had to make. Stark or Greyjoy.”
Theon Greyjoy to Jon Snow
Ser Jorah Mormont
He died the way he also planned to exit the realm of living: protecting his Queen. When Drogon was tackled by the wights and forced to fly off without Daenerys, Jorah was there with his Valyrian steel sword.
He fought bravely to the end, until Arya killed the Night King and all the wights dropped dead. Daenerys was inconsolable and it was a heartrending sight when Drogon covered her with his wings while she held Jorah’s body.
“Even the bravest men fear death.”
Jorah to Missandei
Melisandre, The Red Witch
Melisandre died on her own terms, and strangely, one of only three people in the entire series to die of old age. May we just add that Melisandre was very old, hundreds of years old.
In season 7, she told Varys that it’s her fate to “die in this strange land.” She returned for the Battle of Winterfell, gave her magic light the Dothraki swords and the trenches.
When the Night King was finally defeated, Melisandre walked out into the snow, removed the red necklace that kept her young and alive, and collapsed into the snow before turning to dust.
“I’ve been ready to die for many years. If the Lord was done with me, so be it, but he’s not.”
Melisandre to Jon Snow.
The Night King, and with him the white walkers and wights
Bran’s plan to lure the Night King into the Godswood worked. Theon tried to take the Night King down but paid with his life. And then in that frightful moment when he reached for his sword to kill Bran, Arya came flying out of the darkness like a screaming squirrel monkey.
He grabbed her by the throat but Arya dropped her Valyrian catspaw dagger from her right hand, caught it with her left hand and plunged it into the Night King’s heart. In the same place where the Children of the Forest drove their dagger in 10 000 years ago when they created him.
“The true enemy won’t wait out the storm. He brings the storm.”
Jon Snow regarding the Night King
Technically Viserion died in season seven already when the Night King killed him with a spear. But he was resurrected as the Night King’s ice-breathing dragon.
When Arya killed the Night King, she set off a domino effect which killed all his subjects – all the white walkers, all the wights he raised, including Viserion.
Game of Thrones who characters who survived
In no particular order, these are the ones who made it.
- Grey Worm
- The Hound
- Tyrion Lannister
- Jorah Mormont
- Brienne of Tarth
- Jamie Lannister
- Arya Stark
- Sansa Stark
- Daenerys Stormborn
- Jon Snow
- Bran Stark
- Sam Tarley
- Ghost the wolf
- Rheagal the dragon
- Drogon the dragon